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How do you do....it? Thread, Online learning community for school in Technical; I have been given the task of coming up with a way to develop an online community for my school ...
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    echo's Avatar
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    Question Online learning community for school

    I have been given the task of coming up with a way to develop an online community for my school (large secondary). We want to create something which will allow pupil and staff to discuss learning topics for use in and out of lessons, also to organise trips and events and generally be an online location for school discussions. The elements we would like to include are a forum and blogs and it would be nice to share the odd document, but this will not be the main use.

    We are currently using the Kaleidos Learning Platform, which we quite like for sharing lesson resources and using the VLE. But we aren't keep on the "Web 2.0" elements. It's all a bit clunky and we are looking for a straightforward user experience. We do need to ensure it is only used by the school community so would need to create and distribute usernames ourelves rather than allow the user to generate them.

    It could be a really cool thing to get off the ground, but how would you go about it? My initial though would be to use a vBulletin, but it's something I know very little about. Would it even be feasible to do it this way? What other options do I have? Are there any companies that could provide me with a ready made solution?

    I'm sure the infinite wisdom of the edugeekers will be able to point me in the right direction

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    I'd be thinking Sharepoint myself, as it can then be customised into a multi-function site relatively easy.

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    bossman's Avatar
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    @echo:

    Why not Moodle it would be great for this and there is lots of help provided by the Moodle forums and above all else it's free

    Moodle.org: open-source community-based tools for learning

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    u8dmtm's Avatar
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    Another vote for Sharepoint here.

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    Another vote for moodle

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    Sharepoint here too.

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    echo's Avatar
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    Thanks for the responses so far. I'm not too keen on going for sharepoint as i think that would be to similar to the current Kaleidos Learning Platform, which is based on Sharepoint. I'll have a look into moodle. Any more ideas?

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by echo View Post
    Thanks for the responses so far. I'm not too keen on going for sharepoint as i think that would be to similar to the current Kaleidos Learning Platform, which is based on Sharepoint. I'll have a look into moodle. Any more ideas?
    Why is sharepoint too like Kaleidos? It can be customised in its entirety to look and act exactly as you want, with forums etc... It is just a hosting platform for your own choice of webparts etc...

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    I have to agree with localzuk on this one. You can make it look and feel how you like. We reviewed Kaleidos when we were casting round and our platform looks nothing like it despite both being based around Sharepoint.

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    echo's Avatar
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    I have to admit I've not used pure sharepoint much. I was assuming that it would be similar, would it give me better functionality that Kaleidos as it is based on the same thing? Surely the fuctionality would be very similar.
    I'll not discount Sharepoint, but any other suggestions would be welcome.

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by echo View Post
    I have to admit I've not used pure sharepoint much. I was assuming that it would be similar, would it give me better functionality that Kaleidos as it is based on the same thing? Surely the fuctionality would be very similar.
    I'll not discount Sharepoint, but any other suggestions would be welcome.
    Sharepoint should be considered as a 'shell'. You then stick web parts onto it, which do the functions you desire. So, if you want a forum, you set up a forum webpart. If you want a document repository, you set one of them up. If you want a web part which displays current electricity usage in the school, fed from a smart meter, you do that. etc... It is a canvas for your 'creative juices' to flow onto...

  12. Thanks to localzuk from:

    echo (22nd April 2010)

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    wesleyw's Avatar
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    Haven't found a nice Forum webpart yet a little too clunky at the moment although the same can be said for moodles basic forum module as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by echo View Post
    We do need to ensure it is only used by the school community so would need to create and distribute usernames ourelves rather than allow the user to generate them.
    Don't expect one peice of software to be good at everything, or work in exaclty the way you want - simply use whatever forum software you like most and have it authenticate against the same central authentication server as your school workstations do (i.e. Active Directory, if you use Windows). If your current VLE doesn't authenticate against your central authentication server then it sucks and you should look at replacing it.

    --
    David Hicks

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    Sharepoint, Moodle, edmodo, VBulletin, wordpress / buddypress, the list goes on really ...

  16. Thanks to GrumbleDook from:

    echo (22nd April 2010)

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    echo's Avatar
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    Edmodo is very cool. Thanks GrumbleDook, I didn't know this one existed and it might well fit the bill.

    I'll keep you all updated on our final decision and how we get on with it.

    Thanks to you all for the help, this is such a great forum!

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